[SATLUG] OT: RAID setup recommendations

David Kowis dkowis at shlrm.org
Wed Jan 26 21:12:52 CST 2011

Hash: SHA1

On 1/26/2011 4:18 PM, Alan Lesmerises wrote:
> Since there are so many practicing sysadmin types on the list, I'd like
> to get some recommendations for a RAID setup on a server I have based on
> your real-world experiences.  The server has 7 hot-swappable SCSI drives
> (that I plan to fully populate) and I wanted to use it as file
> repository/backup location for other PC's we have on our home network. 
> Speed is not a priority, but data integrity is.
> From what I have read, there are several ways I could configure the
> RAID, but there are pros & cons with each.  So what I'd like to know is
> what would be your recommendations for the RAID and why?
> TIA.

I'm preferential to ZFS and RAIDz now.

You can get native NFS and iSCSI out of ZFS easily. Nexenta is a solaris
kernel with the Debian (Ubuntu I think) userspace, so there's a learning
curve, but it's not impossible.

Also, given the sizes of drives these days, and that normal RAID doesn't
know what part of the drive is used, you're likely to end up failing
multiple disks before you get the replacements rebuilt. That's at the
1TB+ level though. At a 184GB drive you will probably be fine.

RAIDz is basically RAID5, but much better. Variable stripe size
eliminates the RAID5 write hole and the requirement for expensive
hardware RAID5 cards. Also, it uses hash-sums to verify the stripes
instead of simple XOR. This allows RAIDz volumes to detect and correct
errors in the drives.

Aside from the fact it's solaris, which brings along irritating hardware
requirements, it's the best cheap redundant disk storage system.


PS: I'm getting sick, so if this doesn't make a whole lot of sense, ask
questions and I'll try to be less sick when I answer.
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